As social distancing takes full effect, animal shelters across the country want to share an important message. In an effort to protect their staff and volunteers, many shelters have made the difficult decision to close their doors. This will have a significant impact on how we continue to care for hundreds of thousands of rescued dogs and cats. During this difficult time, shelters want everyone to know that now could be the perfect time to foster rescue pets.
Fostering Rescue Pets Saves Lives
While most shelters are enacting emergency procedures to ensure all animals continue to be taken care of, many are faced with a serious challenge. Shelters in several states have been forced to temporarily decrease their intake numbers. At the same time, they’re doing their best to find either temporary or permanent homes for the animals currently in their care.
Richmond Animal Care and Control in Virginia has closed their doors until at least March 27 and is accepting adoption and foster inquires by appointment only. They posted a plea on social media asking their community to help out during this difficult time. And so far, dozens of dogs have been adopted and fostered.
They said on Facebook,
“So many of you have opened up your heart and home to a RACC shelter pet during this tricky time and we thank you! The less animals we have in house, the more we can reduce our kennel staff workforce, which reduces exposure. The goal here is to keep our human and pet population safe.”
You Can Make A Difference
At Best Friends Animal Society in Utah, shelter staff is doing everything they can to protect people and care for pets at the same time. They’re relying on fosters to help them make room for animals in need. And they’re also pointing out the mutual benefits of fostering during this time of self isolation.
They said on Facebook,
“Thankfully, social distancing doesn’t apply to pets. For some, this may be a lonely time and there are so many dogs and cats who would love to keep you company!”
The Centers for Disease Control and the World Health Organization have released reports stating that there is no risk of pets spreading COVID-19. Instead of sitting at home alone, foster families enjoy the company of playful and cuddly rescue pets. Better yet, they provide a safe haven for animals that have nowhere else to go.
Fostering provides a temporary home to an animal in need and helps them prepare for their eventual adoption. It’s also a great opportunity for people who have been thinking about getting a pet. It can be a trial run to introduce people to the responsibilities of caring for an animal without the lifetime commitment.
Animal shelters rely on their communities help in the best of times, and they’re especially in need now. Fostering a rescue pet while you’re practicing self isolation will be an immense help to your local shelter.
Contact shelters near you to find out what you can do to help during this difficult time.